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The Newton Boys (1998)

PG-13 | | Action, Crime, Drama | 27 March 1998 (USA)
0:29 | Trailer

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The story of the Newton gang, the most successful bank robbers in history, owing to their good planning and minimal violence.



(book), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ma Newton
Jena Karam ...
Orphan Singer
Casey McAuliffe ...
Orphan Singer
Brentwood Glasscock
Charles Gunning ...
Regina Mae Matthews ...
Orphan Fiddler
Becket Gremmels ...
Glynn Williams ...
Farmer Williams
Charles 'Chip' Bray ...
Bank Teller


Four Newton brothers are a poor farmer family in the 1920s. The oldest of them, Willis, one day realizes that there's no future in the fields and offers his brothers to become a bank robbers. Soon the family agrees. They become very famous robbers, and five years later execute the greatest train robbery in American history. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Four brothers. Eighty banks. One hell of a good time. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence including bloody aftermath of a shooting, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

27 March 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Newton fiúk  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$27,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$4,010,245 (USA) (27 March 1998)


$10,297,897 (USA) (15 May 1998)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (Extended Edition)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In the movie, the Texas Ranger who arrests Jess Newton is Frank Hamer. The real Frank Hamer planned and participated in the ambush of Bonnie and Clyde. See more »


When Willis is in jail talking to the investigator, Aldrich, Aldrich leans over to whisper something to him. In the first shot, taken from behind Willis, Aldrich is speaking into Willis's right ear. The scene immediately cuts to a different angle, taken from behind Aldrich, and Aldrich is now speaking into Willis's left ear. See more »


Dock Newton: Where the hell were you, you yellow bastard? You didn't fire a shot!
Brentwood Glasscock: I'm not supposed to fire a shot! YOU'RE not supposed to fire a shot! We're supposed to be BACKUP Willis!
Jess Newton: You back up any further you'd be in Chicago!
See more »

Crazy Credits

As the credits roll, portions of two interviews are shown, each with one brother. One is from a 1980 episode of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962). See more »


Features The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962) See more »


Alabama Jubilee
Written by George L. Cobb & Jack Yellen
Performed by Bad Livers
See more »

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User Reviews

Lesser Linklater, still a solid entertainment.
5 January 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Though not on par with some of his more noted works such as Dazed and Confused or Before Sunrise, The Newton Boys is still a noteworthy film by Richard Linklater, focusing on the all-to-real story of the four Newton brothers from Ulvade, Texas who ended up robbing over eighty banks and a train in just four years before finally being arrested and imprisoned in 1924.

What Linklater does here that is most interesting is his use of music and detached style of shooting. Nearly all of the music on the soundtrack consists of blues-infused, upbeat country style which is consistent with the setting of this movie but not necessarily the tone. There is a dark underlying element to this story, most notably in the evolution of the main character Willis, played so wonderfully and engagingly by Matthew McConaughey it makes one shake their head as to why he would continue to make useless romantic comedies these days. Willis begins the film as bright, optimistic, a loyal son and brother but upset about the way justice is mistreated in south Texas. Determined to right this wrong, he becomes enamored with the idea of robbing banks, justifying it by claiming that the banks are the real thieves and his form of stealing would simply be a little thief taking from a big one.

Though many of the subsequent scenes are nothing original in this genre, simply derivative of Bonnie and Clyde or Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, the four leads are all very engaging and likable, especially McConaughey and Ethan Hawke. Linklater keeps the audience at a distance with the use of the awkward music and the lack of character depth. In many cases, the supporting cast is simply that rather than an opportunity to reflect the brothers' view of their lives and worldview. Nevertheless, the film is as a whole better than the most recent of its kind. It has an innocent-like quality to it thanks to the fervent belief of Willis Newtown: doing this was simply a way to make money and for that reason there was no reason for them to stop.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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